Woodward Uses Clemency Again

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

The Atlanta Constitution

Saturday, July 19, 1913

Asserting That He Considers Recorder Mentally Irresponsible, the Mayor Announces Controversy Closed.

With the declaration that no utterance by Recorder Nash R. Broyles will induce him to resort to blackguardism or swerve him in the matter of exercising clemency, Mayor James G. Woodward yesterday reduced the sentence of George Poulas, a Greek retsaurant [sic] keeper, who was fined $100 or thirty days in the stockade for alleged violation of the near beer laws.

The extent of the mayor’s clemency was to reduce the fine assessed against Poulas to $49 or twenty-nine days in jail. Poulas was tried and convicted before W.H. Preston, acting recorder.

Considers Testimony Weak.

Mayor Woodward stated that his reason for pardoning Poulas was because the only witness against him was a 12-year-old negro boy.

“The testimony shows,” said the mayor, “that the negro boy had been in the employ of Poulas, and was discharged. By his own admission his testimony was biased and prejudiced, and hardly worthy of credit against the word of a white man.

V. Mazafladl, Greek consul, and a number of influential men of the Greek colony appeared before the mayor in behalf of Poulas, and made a strong plea for clemency.

Must Be Some Error.

Mayor Woodward said:

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Grand Jury Meets to Indict Conley

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

The Atlanta Constitution

Saturday, July 19, 1913

Call Is Issued After Solicitor General Hugh Dorsey Had Flatly Refused Request of Foreman.

A call for the Fulton grand jury to meet at 10 o’clock Monday to take steps leading to the indictment of James Conley, the negro sweeper of the National Pencil factory who accuses Leo M. Frank, its superintendent, of the Mary Phagan murder was issued yesterday by Foreman W.D. Beatie [sic] after Solicitor General Hugh M. Dorsey had flatly refused the foreman’s request to call the meeting.

The move to indict Conley is wrong and should not be made, the solicitor told the grand jury foreman when discussing the matter with him and the call which went out was over the head of the state’s legal representative in Fulton county.

Smith Attacks Action

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Scott Believes Conley Innocent, Asserts Lanford

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

The Atlanta Constitution

Saturday, July 19, 1913

Chief’s Statement Follows the Publication of Report That Pinkertons Are Now of the Opinion Sweeper Is Guilty.


“Our Testimony in Case Will Be Fair and Impartial,” He Says—Grand Jury Called to Consider Indicting Conley.


Meeting of grand jury called to take steps leading to indictment of James Conley on the charge of murder, over protest of Solicitor General Hugh Dorsey, who declares that indictment of Conley will be useless procedure.

Reported on Friday that the Pinkertons have changed their opinion in case, and now believe Conley guilty of murder, and Leo M. Frank innocent.

Harry Scott, field manager of Pinkertons, is denied permission to see Conley in his cell and subject him to quiz, although always allowed this privilege in past.

“Scott told me he still believes Conley innocent and Frank guilty,” says Chief of Detectives Lanford. “Pinkertons will give fair and impartial testimony at coming trial,” Scott tells Constitution. “Whether it affects Frank or the negro is no concern of ours; we were employed to find the murderer.”

“Conley is dealing fairly with the state of Georgia,” says his attorney, William M. Smith, in making attack on action of the grand jury.

That Harry Scott, field manager for the Pinkertons, came to police headquarters yesterday afternoon immediately following the publication of a story to the effect that the Pinkertons now believed in Conley’s guilt, and declared that he still held to the theory that the negro was innocent and Frank guilty, was the assertion made by Newport Lanford, chief of detectives, last night.

“Scott told me,” said the chief last night, “that there was no truth in the article so far as he personally was concerned, and that he continued firm in the belief that Conley was innocent.

“He has maintained throughout the investigation that Frank is guilty, and that Conley had nothing more to do with the crime than the complicity to which he confessed. He came to me Friday especially to deny the story.

Why Scott Was Barred.

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Pinkertons Now Declare Leo M. Frank Is Innocent

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

The Atlanta Journal

Friday, July 18, 1913

*Editor’s Note: Small sections of text are missing due to scanning near a crease.


Harry Scott, Field Chief of the Pinkertons, Refuses to Discuss the Agency’s Change of Theory.


The Pinkertons Were Employed by the National Pencil Factory Immediately Following the Murder

That the Pikerton [sic] detectives, who for so many weeks held to the theory that Leo M. Frank is guilty of the Mary Phagan murder, now lay the crime to the door of Jim Conley, is a recent development of interest to the students of the murder mystery.

While Harry Scott, the field chief of the Pinkerton operatives, who have been working on the case practically from the first, employed by the National pencil factory to find Mary Phagan’s murderer, regardless of who the criminal might be, refuses to discuss the case, the Journal has learned from unquestioned authority that the theory of the Pinkertons has undergone a change.

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Grand Jury Is Called Monday to Indict Jim Conley

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

The Atlanta Journal

Friday, July 18, 1913

*Editor’s Note: Small sections of text are missing due to scanning near a crease.


Foreman W.D. Beattie Calls Body to Meet Monday and Take Up Evidence Against Negro in Phagan Girl’s Case derer [sic]


Notwithstanding the Solicitor’s Protest, Foreman Calls a Meeting Anyhow—Dorsey Issues a Statement

Over the vigorous protest of Solicitor General Hugh M. Dorsey, the foreman of the grand jury has called a meeting for Monday for the specific purpose of considering an indictment against James Conley, the negro sweeper, who claims that he assisted Superintendent Leo M. Frank in disposing of the body of Mary Phagan, after she had been murdered in the National pencil factory on April 26.

The solictior [sic] general was approached Friday morning by W. D. Beattie, real estate dealer, who is the foreman of the present jury. Mr. Beattie asked Mr. Dorsey to call a meeting of the jury, and the solicitor flatly refused. Then Mr. Beattie informed the county’s highest prosecuting official that he, as foreman of the grand jury, would call the body together to consider the Conley [m]atter.

After the conference Solicitor Dorsey authorized one of the few statements which he has made since he took up the Phagan case. He said that he told Mr. Beattie that the move to indict Conley was […] should not be […]

“Its only purpose,” the solicitor said, “will be to exploit the evidence and embarrass the state, and I hope the grand jury when it meets will decide to leave the matter alone.

“The indictment of Conley at this time will be a useless procedure that will not stop the trial of Frank. It will only have a mild, but undesirable effect on the state’s case.

“Conley is in jail and is going to stay there for some time. He is where the authorities can put their hands on him, and he can be indicted much more properly after the Frank case has been disposed of than before, and by the delay there is no danger of a miscarriage of justice.”

It has long been known that the defense of Frank will be in a measure the prosecution of Conley, and naturally it is of importance to the defense to have the man it will accuse under a grand jury indictment.


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Broyles Comes Back at Mayor Woodward and Mayor at Him

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

The Atlanta Journal

Friday, July 18, 1913

*Editor’s Note: Small sections of text are missing due to scanning near a crease.

Recorder Says Mayor Is Defeating Justice and Impeding Officers in Their Attempts to Check Crime


Says Recorder Plays Golf on Sunday and Then Fines Boys for Their Sunday Baseball Games

Another direct statement by Recorder Nash R. Broyles, Friday morning, of his opinion of Mayor Woodward’s clemency toward criminals convicted in police court, was issued by the recorder in writing, coupled with a verbal comment that the mayor “tells so many falsehoods that it would be futile to attempt to answer them.”

In his new expression, Recorder Broyles apologizes to the hog which he contrasted with the mayor Thursday, in [which he] says that the mayor knows less about law than a hog does about political economy.

Following is the recorder’s written statement:

“I care nothing for the mayor’s abuse. Condemnation from such a character should be considered praise. But when he says that the court of appeals on May 23, 1913, reversed me in ten cases and sustained me in seven, he tells such a ridiculous and absurd falsehood that I now apologize to the hog to which I referred yesterday when I said that the mayor knows less about law than the hog knows about economy.

“The idea of the court of appeals passing in one day on seventeen cases appealed from the recorder’s court of Atlanta! The records of that court will show that on the average there are not seventeen cases a year carried from my court to the court of appeals, and they will show also that that court has sustained me in ten cases where it has reversed me in one.

“But the mayor is, as usual, trying to side-step the issue between us. That issue is not my ability as a lawyer or a judge. I am content to let my record speak for me. The issue is that the mayor, in protecting and pardoning the […] criminals of […] and defeating justice in our courts and impeding the officers of the law in their attempt to check crime in our city; and that is the issue on which the people at the next election will call him to account.”


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Woodward-Broyles Breach Widens

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

The Atlanta Georgian

Friday, July 18, 1913


Apologizes Also to Porcine Family for Likening Woodward’s Legal Knowledge to Theirs.

Recorder Nash Broyles penned a polite note of apology to the whole hog family Friday.

With the same hand he picked up the cudgels with which again to belabor his honor, Mayor Woodward.

The Mayor, quoth the recorder, was the author of a ridiculous and absurd falsehood and it was a regrettable libel upon Mr.Hog to have to submit to a comparison with Atlanta’s Mayor.

As for the Mayor, he declared he was tired of wasting verbiage on the Recorder and that he would have nothing more to say in their quarrel. He intimated, however, that he had it in his mind to override the Recorder again by pardoning another prisoner.

Here are Recorder Broyles’ comments on the Mayor:

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Detectives Working to Discredit Mincey

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

The Atlanta Georgian

Friday, July 18, 1913


Detective Bent on Questioning Negro Is Barred From Cell by Chief Lanford.

With Pinkerton detectives taking the trail in search of W.H. Mincey, whose startling accusations against Jim Conley stirred the police department and won the negro another “sweating” from Solicitor Dorsey, the Mincey affidavit Friday became the storm center about which the prosecution and defense in the Frank case waged their battle.

Despite the degree of indifference with which the detectives and prosecuting officials affected to look upon the remarkable statements of Mincey, it became known Friday that every effort was being bent toward locating him and turning the light on his past history.

Pinkertons Have Clew.

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Milledgeville Prison Torn Down

From the media:

The Old State Prison Building at the Georgia State Prison Farm, built in 1911 in Milledgeville, GA and briefly the home of Leo Frank in 1915 before his kidnapping and subsequent lynching by an angry mob, was torn down starting late July. After not being used for several decades, and facing a $5 million bill just to stabilize the building for preservation, Baldwin County officials decided to tear down the building.

The twist to this story is that the county was not required to hold public hearings on the demolition, since the county was able to secure a contractor to tear down the building for free, except that the contractor got to keep the bricks from the building. As the county did not have to spend funds in the process, a hearing was not needed. Even a spot on the National Register of Historic Places was not enough to save the century-old building.






Many Rumors Afloat Regarding Grand Jury

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

The Atlanta Constitution

Friday, July 18, 1913

Among These Is One That Effort Will Be Made to Indict Conley.

That the grand jury would meet possibly today or tomorrow and take steps toward indicting James Conley, the negro sweeper of the National Pencil factory, was a persistent rumor in circulation Thursday. From Foreman W.D. Beattie came the statement that he had not called for a meeting of the grand jury and that as far as he knew there would be no such action taken. Solicitor Hugh M. Dorsey also declared that he had issued no call for the grand jury and knew nothing of any such action.

“I have not issued a call for a meeting,” explained Mr. Beattie, “and as far as I am concerned the grand jury will not take steps to indict Conley. Of course, the members of the grand jury have the right to come together and to take any steps they may desire, and I am speaking only for myself in saying that no steps will be taken to start an investigation of Conley’s alleged connection.”

“There is nothing new in the Mary Phagan murder case, as far as I know,” said the solicitor, “and I have issued no call for the grand jury. The state is continuing its work and will be ready on July 28 for the trial of Leo M. Frank.”

Attorneys Reuben R. Arnold and Luther Z. Rosser held a consultation Thursday afternoon in Mr. Arnold’s office at which they discussed the phases of their case, according to Mr. Arnold. At the courthouse it was said that Judge L.S. Roan, who is due to preside over the Frank trial, was in consultation with lawyers on both sides and that there was a possibility of the case being postponed.

Both Solicitor Dowrsey [sic] and Attorney Arnold denied this, and Attorney Arnold stated that the only consultation was that between him and Mr. Rosser.

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The Atlanta Constitution, July 18th 1913, “Many Rumors Afloat Regarding Grand Jury,” Leo Frank case newspaper article series (Original PDF)

Wordy War Over, Says Woodward

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

The Atlanta Constitution

Friday, July 18, 1913

In Final Fling at Broyles the Mayor Declares He Is Through With Controversies With City Officials.

The word war raging between Mayor James G. Woodward and Judge Nash R. Broyles, police magistrate, which grew out of the mayor’s use of the pardon prerogative, grew tense yesterday, when both sides hurled bitter excoriations at the other.

Mayor Woodward took a final fling at Recorder Broyles in a statement last night.

“I sympathize with Broyles,” Mayor Woodward said. “He is, in my opinion, a political accident. No one takes him seriously. He is mad with the courts for reversing him, and he is trying to take it all out on me. Really, I am sorry for the fellow.”

The mayor announced that he is through with controversies with any city officer. He stated that in the future he will welcome criticism when it is made to him, face to face.

“And when I have anything to say to Judge Broyles I’ll tell it to him.”

What Each Thinks of Other.

Both Mayor Woodward and Recorder Broyles burned up a choice collection of adjectives in their debates in the newspapers Thursday.

“He’s ignorant.

“He knows about as much of law as a hog does of political economy.

“He’s a menace to civilization.”

Those are some of the harsh things Recorder Broyles said about the mayor.


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Effort Being Made to Indict Negro Conley

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

The Atlanta Journal

Thursday, July 17, 1913

Foreman Beattie of Grand Jury, However, Says He Knows of No Such Move

W.D. Beattie, foreman of the grand jury, declares that “so far as he knows” there is no intention on the part of the grand jury to consider an indictment of Jim Conley, the negro sweeper, who figures so prominently in the Phagan murder mystery.

The Journal has learned, however, on excellent authority, that a determined effort is being made to have the Conley case passed upon by the present grand jury. Whether the effort will or will not be futile is a matter of conjecture.

Foreman Beattie states that no meeting of the jury is expected during the present week, but that the body will probably be called together early next week to consider matters of a routine nature.

Solicitor General Hugh M. Dorsey is said to be making every effort to block the proposed indictment of Conley, who will be used as the principal witness against Leo M. Frank when he faces a jury probably a week from next Monday.

The present grand jury has not been called together since its organization several weeks ago, but it is known that a number of its members think that despite the attitude of the solicitor, a meeting should be called, and the evidence against Conley, including the confessions of complicity, submitted for the jury’s consideration.

It is said that the indictment of Conley as a principal would seriously injure the state’s case against Frank, and Solicitor Dorsey is naturally opposing every move in that direction.


The present grand jury was organized early in July, but since the organization meting [sic] its members have never ben [sic] called together. In the past the majority of grand juries have met weekly.

Further still it is known that the present grand jury will hold no meeting unless the call originates with the members, and if it does it is practically certain that the Conley matter will be considered.

Should the grand jury meet and indict the negro sweeper over the direct and vigorous protest of the solicitor, it will break a long established precedent in the county. While the grand jury has full authority, without even consulting the solicitor, to call a meeting and indict the negro, the solicitor general’s wishes in regard to criminal cases have been respected in the past.

However, there is said to be such a sentiment in the grand jury that its members should consider the Conley case that the calling of a special meeting for that purpose is a strong probability.


A very significant point, showing the solicitor’s attitude is the fact that he has not called a meeting of the jury and is not expected to call one until after the Frank case has been called for trial.

Following the trial of the Frank case, the indictment of Conley either as an accessory or as a principal is certain. After the Frank trial the solicitor himself will present the case against the negro to the grand jury.

There is no question about the fact that there is now sufficient evidence against Conley for the grand jury to indict him. It can be shown that he was in the factory on the day Mary Phagan was killed, and his admissions of complicity to the detectives and his alleged admission of the crime to W.H. Mincey would be sufficient to warrant a bill.

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The Atlanta Journal, July 17th 1913, “Effort Being Made to Indict Negro Conley,” Leo Frank case newspaper article series (Original PDF)

Woodward Enemy to Society, Says Recorder Broyles

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

The Atlanta Georgian

Thursday, July 17, 1913

*Editor’s Note: Some words in the middle of this article are missing due to scanning blur near a page fold.

Recorder Replies to Mayor’s Charges of “Czar-Like” Police Court and Scores Him Severely


The Judge Says, “Never Argue With an Ignorant Man, for You Can’t Convince Him He’s Wrong”

Recorder Nash R. Broyles, in replying to Mayor James G. Woodward’s criticism of his heavy sentences, quotes the philosopher who says, “Do not argue with an ignorant man, for you can never convince him that he is wrong.”

“While Woodward does not know as much about law as a hog does about political economy,” the recorder remarked between the trial of cases Thursday morning, “I don’t mind making a statement to put the facts before the public.

“This man Griff Freeman, whose sentence the mayor reduced until it was a negligible quantity, is the most notorious blind tiger now plying his trade in Atlanta. I had sentenced him to serve thirty days in the stockade and to pay a fine of $500. The case was carried to both of the higher courts, which sustained me. The evidence of his guilt was absolute.

“After the courts had sustained my sentence, Mayor Woodward comes along and reduces the man’s fine by half, and then removes entirely the sentence of thirty days in the stockade.

“Now, this man, whom the mayor thinks should not serve in the stockade has come before me again, and again the evidence against him is flawless.

“Five white men testified that they purchased whiskey from him, and the man declares that he has been buying liquor from Freeman for the past seven years.

“What are the courts for,” asked the recorder, “if not to deal with men like Freeman, whose only business and occupation is the flagrant violation of the law?

“I must say that a man who blocks the courts in an effort to stop law violations of this and other similar criminals is an enemy to civilization and to society.

“Before Mayor Woodward reduced the Freeman […] he called me over the telephone and […] my advice […] the matter, and after I had given him the facts in the case, he told me that he would not interfere.”

The recorder in commenting upon the mayor’s attitude, cited the case of Dr. Roper, who is again in the toils after having been once pardoned by the mayor.

Wednesday afternoon Judge Broyles bound Griffin over to the state courts under $1,000 bond in each of five cases and in a sixth case he sentenced him to serve twenty-nine days in the stockade. Freeman has stayed the stockade sentence by making a $1,000 certiorari bond. He is now at liberty under a total bond of $6,000.

“I am not going to have the city stockade turned into a modern Siberia if I can help it,” declared Mayor James G. Woodward Wednesday afternoon in commenting on the report that Griff Freeman, a blind tiger, sentenced Wednesday by Judge Broyles, had previously been pardoned by him.

The mayor asserted that he didn’t pardon Freeman, but on the recommendation of two physicians, Dr. Hugh I. Battey and Dr. G.G. Hall, reduced his fine to $250 in order that he might pay it and leave the stockade, since he was physically unable to work.

The mayor, in the course of his statements about the case, characterized the methods of Judge Nash R. Broyles, recorder, as too severe and czarlike.

“Whenever it is proven to me that a prisoner deserves clemency, I will see that he gets it,” the mayor added.

Griff Freeman, the blind tiger whose fine was previously reduced by the mayor, was again before recorder Wednesday and was fined heavily in several cases and bound over to the state courts under bonds aggregating $6,000.

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The Atlanta Georgian, July 17th 1913, “Woodward Enemy to Society, Says Recorder Broyles,” Leo Frank case newspaper article series (Original PDF)

Mayor Asked to Probe Action of Police

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

The Atlanta Georgian

Thursday, July 17, 1913

Declaring that police officers placed him under arrest while he was attempting to convey a woman in the throes of an epileptic fit to a hospital and forced him to be the companion to a negro in riding in the patrol wagon to the police station, Mongin F. Smith, vice president and secretary of the Eagle Stamp Works, Thursday afternoon carried a trenchant complaint of police stupidity to Mayor Woodward for investigation.

“The young woman whom we were endeavoring to place in a hospital was Miss Mabel Parker, a performer at the Old Mill Theater on Whitehall street,” declared Mr. Smith. “She was taken with a convulsion when she learned of her brother’s near death Wednesday afternoon.

“Aided by B.T. Glenn, manager of the theater, we placed her in an ambulance and drove to the Grady Hospital. While endeavoring to secure her a ward in the hospital, we were approached by two policemen who, as I understand, had been summoned by the hospital authorities when we first drove up.

“Despite our pleas to give us time to see that Miss Parker was cared for, the policemen made us go to the patrol wagon. Inside there was a negro man. The police would not hire a cab. We complained against riding with the negro and offered to hear to this and shoved us in the patrol. We rode to the police station in this manner.

“After being held for nearly an hour, while an investigation was being made, we were released.”

Mr. Smith has asked Mayor Woodward for a complete investigation of the affair, and that the guilty policemen be summarily dealt with.

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The Atlanta Georgian, July 17th 1913, “Mayor Asked to Probe Action of Police,” Leo Frank case newspaper article series (Original PDF)

Youth Accused in Vice Ring on Trial

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

The Atlanta Georgian

Thursday, July 17, 1913

Joe North, Alleged White Slaver, Declines to Talk Before Hearing in Recorder’s Court.

Joe North, alleged white slaver, arrested on the statement of Effie Drummond, a young woman who told the police he lured her into a rooming house, will be tried before Recorder Nash Broyles at 2:30 o’clock Thursday afternoon and every effort made to get from him the names of other persons in the “vice ring,” to which Chief of Police James L. Beavers says North owes allegiance.

North was arrested Wednesday night after a search of very nearly a week. He was put through a severe grilling Thursday morning by Chief Beavers, but declined absolutely to make any statement until he was forced to do so by the court.

Effie Drummond, the girl who was arrested in the raid on the house at Fair and Peters streets operated by Lula Bell, will be brought in from Martha’s Home to repeat her sensational story of how she came to Atlanta from the country and was caught in the net of a white slaver. Chief Beavers said he confidently expected the trial Thursday afternoon to establish the fact there was a vice ring in Atlanta and that cases similar to the Drummond affair were not uncommon.

* * *

The Atlanta Georgian, July 17th 1913, “Youth Accused in Vice Ring on Trial,” Leo Frank case newspaper article series (Original PDF)

Mayor and Broyles in War of Words

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

The Atlanta Georgian

Thursday, July 17, 1913


“Can’t Convince Ignorant Man He’s Mistaken,” Says Judge, Quoting Epictetus.


He’s ignorant.
He’s a menace to civilization.
He knows as much law as a boy does political economy.


He’s a petty czar.
My office is bigger than his.
If he wants to run my office, let him come up and give me orders.

“Do not argue with an ignorant man, for you can never convince him he is wrong.”

Recorder Nash R. Broyles, quoting Mr. Epictetus, the late well-known Greek philosopher, spoke thusly Thursday.

Following this declaration Mr. Broyles then declined to argue with Mayor James G. Woodward over the action in the case of Griff Freeman, an alleged notorious blind tiger operator, whom Broyles had sentenced to a $500 fine and a 29-day term in the stockade, when the Mayor declared he did not propose to see the city prison turned into a modern Siberia by a “too severe and czar-like Recorder.”

Impugns His Legal Lore.

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Dorsey Blocked Indictment of Conley

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

The Atlanta Georgian

Thursday, July 17, 1913

*Editor’s Note: This article ran in other editions of the Georgian with slight variations in the headline.


Solicitor Bitterly Opposes Plan of New Body to Reconsider Slaying Case.

That the most strenuous opposition of Solicitor General Hugh M. Dorsey was all that prevented the last Grand Jury from reopening its investigation of the Phagan mystery with a view of indicting the negro Jim Conley became known Thursday.

It was admitted by persons acquainted with the events in the Grand Jury room that the Solicitor’s determined stand only blocked a consideration of the negro’s connection with the crime. Well-substantiated report also has it that Solicitor Dorsey before he would venture on his vacation took the precaution of insisting on some sort of a guarantee from the jurors that they would take no action in his absence.

Acceding to his request, the Grand Jury of that time passed resolutions pledging itself to waive all consideration of the Phagan mystery until the Solicitor’s return.

Hot Fight Certain.

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Second Phagan Indictment Probable

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

The Atlanta Journal

Wednesday, July 16, 1913

*Editor’s Note: A small section of text is missing from the article due to scanning blur near a page fold.


New Grand Jury Will Take Up Case and Make an Effort to Get a True Bill Against Negro as Principal


Solicitor Dorsey Is Expected to Vigorously Oppose Jury’s Move—Negro Sweated Again by Detectives

It was learned Wednesday by The Journal, on reliable authority, that there is a strong probability of the Fulton county grand jury which was recently organized by the election of W.D. Beattie as foreman will take up the case of Jim Conley, negro sweeper at the National Pencil factory, and confessed accomplice to the murder of Mary Phagan, before the trial of Leo M. Frank, who is accused of the crime by the negro, is entered upon.

If the grand jury takes up the negro’s case, it is believed that a bill charging the negro with the crime as a principal will be considered and if an indictment is brought it seems probable that murder will be the charge.

The grand jury will take up Conley’s case over the vigorous protest of Solicitor Hugh M. Dorsey, who it is stated, has not changed his theory about the murder.

Solicitor Dorsey has from the beginning taken the position that Conley should be held as a material witness and that this was not the time for the grand jury to investigate his connection with the Phagan murder. If the grand jury takes up the negro’s case there seems little doubt that the solicitor will bitterly oppose its action.

An indictment of Conley prior to the trial of Frank as principal would undoubtedly greatly weaken the state’s case, and the solicitor is expected to use […] jury to persuade if not to consider an indictment.


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State to Fight Move to Indict Jim Conley

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

The Atlanta Georgian

Wednesday, July 16, 1913

Grand Jury Foreman Admits That Action Against the Negro Is Considered.

The reported proposal by some of the members of the Grand Jury to meet for an investigation of Jim Conley’s connection with the murder of Mary Phagan has precipitated a sharp struggle in which Solicitor Dorsey has declared himself bitterly opposed to any action looking toward the indictment of the negro as a principal in the crime or even as an accessory after the fact, as the negro admits himself to be.

The fight has resolved itself into a contest to determine whether Conley shall go on the stand in the trial of Leo Frank as a reputable, trustworthy and free citizen, the status in which the Solicitor wishes to maintain him, or as a prisoner with the shadow of an indictment hanging over him.

In the latter aspect, several of the members of the Grand Jury are said to contend that he should appear, inasmuch as he is a confessed accessory and a possible principal.

The defense is said not to be opposed to the review of the case by the Grand Jury at this time nor to the indictment of Conley. Luther Z. Rosser, chief counsel for Frank, has charged from the first that Conley was the man guilty of the slaying of Mary Phagan, and it is presumed that he would be willing to enjoy the tactical advantage that the indictment of Conley probably would give the defense.

W.D. Beattie, foreman of the Grand Jury, intimated Thursday morning that the matter of calling the body together to consider a Conley indictment was under consideration by some of the members, but he said that no formal request had as yet been made for him to convene them. He said that he would issue the call when he had received a sufficient number of requests.

It is understood that the requests will be submitted to the foreman Thursday, on the ground that the evidence connecting Jim Conley directly with the crime is infinitely stronger than the evidence on which Leo Frank was indicted about two months ago, and that for this reason Conley should not be permitted to go before a jury as a free and unsuspected man and testify against Frank.

* * *

The Atlanta Georgian, July 16th 1913, “State to Fight Move to Indict Jim Conley,” Leo Frank case newspaper article series (Original PDF)

Dorsey Adds Startling Evidence

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

The Atlanta Georgian

Wednesday, July 16, 1913

*Editor’s Note: This article also ran in the Final (Box Score) Edition under the headline “State Finds New Frank Evidence.”

Solicitor Declares Prosecution’s Plans Are Unchanged—Doesn’t Expect Conley Indictment.

That affidavits as sensational and direct against Leo M. Frank, accused of murdering Mary Phagan, as the Mincey statement was against the negro, Jim Conley, are in the hands of the State and will be substantiated by witnesses at the trial, July 28, was admitted by Solicitor General Hugh M. Dorsey Wednesday morning.

The Solicitor and Frank A. Hooper, associated with him in the prosecution, made it plain that in their opinion the Mincey affidavit had in no way hurt the State’s case against Frank, and that they could anticipate no development that would make Conley instead of Frank the principal in Atlanta’s greatest murder mystery.

They say they do not expect the Grand Jury to indict the negro before the trial of Frank, and do not hesitate to say that any move in that direction will meet with opposition from the Solicitor, who would necessarily have to introduce witnesses to secure the indictment.

State’s Case Complete.

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